Sunday, August 16, 2009

Woodstock Nation: 40 Years Gone; My Aftermath


40 years ago I was a young teen who, as a bit of youthful, furtive rebellion, concocted a ruse that worked to allow me to attend Woodstock. I was too young, I was too 'prissy' for all the mud & dirt, & was glad that I made it there. The music was the message during that fretful time. Most likely few who attended had mortgages or rents ; deadlines other than a school assignment, or appointments other than a weekend at the lake. I have thought long and hard over the years about how life can change so much in the seemingly blink of an eye. How is it that we all somehow become encumbered with the baggage of our lives? The relationships that didn't work that none-the-less forever colored our point of view; the jobs that we either left or were required to leave that somehow made existence more tenuous than ever for a time; the moves that never really made us more comfortable or happier; the things that we wish we had or had not done. I left Woodstock early. I had been moved by the compassion of the 'hog-farmers' who doled out food, love and care during this weekend sojourn. I had been entranced by the power of the music, but even then my abject dislike of large crowds was in evidence. Before the last notes had ended and the bumper to bumper return leg of the journey began I had left while the leaving was, if not good, than easier at least. I checked into the nearest decent motel for a hot bath and room service. Ever the 'princess' I liked soap and warm food better than the mind effacing lure of mud and hunger. I still prefer clean linen to dirty & I still need the solace of my personal space filled with quiet. Woodstock was, however, still a seminal event in my young life and it has managed to somehow direct me along the long road to ' now'. I am a princess child of the Woodstock Nation and I am glad that my ruse worked and that I was able to be, for even a couple of days, an attendee at the biggest musical event ever peacefully held. It was, in fact, four days that were filled will the magic of music, the blessings of peace and the warmth of fellowship.

Precious few of my friends have remained true to the far more simple ideals that those of us from the "Woodstock generation" originally espoused. I climbed the proverbial career ladder and reached, what for my chosen career, was the top, only to discover that it was not at all what I had thought it would be. The money was not worth the cost to be less than happy; the stress not worth cost to soul. From the stand point of accumulated tears I look back on my life now, not with regrets, so much as wonder. Where do the years go. Why did I not have more of "big-picture" mentality at the time - large enough to realize that the moment is, truly 'now'. We have no do-overs, or reruns, no second chances at creating our lives. There are no opportunites to truly erase the memories, both good and bad, that become a part of psyche at each step of each minute along the way. At some point in our journey the concept of Ram Dass' book becomes poignantly clear 'Remember - Be Here Now'. Now truly is the only thing that we have for certain - so we better make 'now' a good moment!

That's all for my ramblings. I am off to make the moments in this day count - I hope - by draing my way towards a deadline. Now how's that for making the Woodstock spirit live?! Yeah, I know, I probably stll need to work on that a bit before my time is up! Namaste.

4 comments:

sandra wyman said...

Really enjoyed this post. Being older than you I was in university at the time and, to quote Wordsworth "Bliss was it in that time to be alive, but to be young was very heaven" (he was speaking about the early days of the French Revolution but expressing how I felt about the Woodstock era. Most of my important attitudes were formed then and though having to make adjustments from time to time, the basics remain with me and have informed the way I have lived...

sandra wyman said...

sorry misquoted - shound begin "Great was it in that dawn to be alive..."

phonelady said...

wow how awesomely cool that you went to woodstock that just blows my mind that a thing like that too place and so many that were there have passed out of this world as well. cool blog . Peace .

Fannie said...

Namaste. ;-D

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